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Uncategorized Hope Partnership launches innovative, shared business model with mainline Protestant denominations

Hope Partnership launches innovative, shared business model with mainline Protestant denominations

Hope Partnership for Missional Transformation, a general ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) that develops transformational leaders through innovative approaches that transform congregations and communities, announces an innovative, ecumenical shared business model with the church extension funds of mainline Protestant denominations.

Hope Partnership for Missional Transformation has formed a groundbreaking ecumenical partnership, bringing together the best practices and services of mainline Protestant denominations through their respective church extension funds, using an innovative ecumenical model to serve each other. The best practices of programs and services, a new network of colleagues, decades of experiences, leadership, and faith have been pooled to provide transformational ministry services to a wider ecumenical network of congregations.

“This is a visible expression of true ecumenical partnership,” says Gilberto Collazo, president of Hope Partnership.

“Our approach respects the uniqueness of every congregation, and builds on the assets in its own context,” says Rick Morse, vice president of Hope Partnership. “Churches that work through the transformational process frequently make a bold decision and find a renewed missional calling for their future.”

With a growing national ecumenical network of trained facilitators and coaches—bolstered by this collaboration—Hope Partnership assists both struggling and thriving congregations to move into financially sustainable, life-transforming mission. These mainline Protestant church extension funds will also now be using Hope Partnership services to extend their own respective products and services portfolios.

Participating church extension funds are from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Episcopal Church, and the United Church of Christ. Church extension funds provide capital financing to churches and ministry programs for building purchases, construction, renovation, as well as property redevelopment projects. Since 2014, presidents of the church extension funds, including Rick Reisinger of Disciples Church Extension Fund, began meeting to identify common dilemmas related to struggling congregations and subsequently determine how they can best work together to support their shared goals.

Under this new collaboration, each church extension fund will contribute financial and operational support to train and coordinate the expanded ecumenical network of assessors and facilitators needed to deliver transformational services to member churches.

Hope Partnership was initially founded in 2012 in a collaborative effort between Church Extension (now Disciples Church Extension Fund), Disciples Home Missions (DHM), and Higher Education and Leadership Ministries (HELM) to provide leadership development programs, assist Disciples churches with ministry assessment and viability, and facilitate the resulting transformation of both leadership and ministry.

“Hope Partnership will continue empowering courageous Disciples leaders,” says Gilberto Collazo. “And now, we will all share our resources and expertise so that more communities can be touched by transformational churches doing ministry in new ways.”

Hope Partnership for Missional Transformation supports congregations through leadership development services that equip clergy and lay leaders to lead in insightful, invigorated and innovative ways. It offers four main programs, including: (1) New Beginnings, a six-month facilitated and coached process for congregations struggling with financial and membership sustainability; (2) Epiphany, a one-year facilitated and coached process for churches already at equilibrium to imagine and live into their future ministry story; (3) Mission Pathways, an individualized, three-month self-guided service for healthy congregations looking at new ways to do ministry; and, (4) Recasting, a one-year process that brings together groups of congregations for the creativity, motivation, and accountability that occurs when meeting in community, as they form and launch their own options for sustainability and ministry. To learn more about Hope Partnership, visit hopepmt.org.

Disciples Church Extension Fund is the church extension fund of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). To learn more, visit disciplescef.org.